COMMUNITY groups in Keighley district have been awarded more than £40,000 worth of National Lottery money.

Five organisations received shares ranging from £10,000 to £4,260, as part of a total funding boost of nearly £5 million across Yorkshire and Humber.

Among local groups benefitting is Oakworth Community Trust which gained £10,000 for its Storage Solutions For All scheme at Oakworth Village Hall. The trust wants to build an extension to the hall to maximise its use.

Trust secretary Martin van der Boon said: “We’re really excited to hear about this award. It will go toward the construction of a ground floor extension which will provide much-needed storage space, as well as a utility area and Disability Discrimination Act compliant fire exit.

“Current storage facilities are dotted around the building and are inadequate for large items or large amounts of items.

“People hiring the hall regularly require significant storage to enable them to use the building. The trust similarly requires more space to allow the continued offering of services from the hall and other community events.

“The extension, and specifically the additional fire exit, will allow the occupancy of the building to be increased allowing a wider range of facilities to be offered.

“Planning permission has been secured. We’re in the final stages of fundraising the amount required. The lottery award is a significant boost towards the total and we’re delighted to receive it.”

A grant of £9,950 has been given to Community Cougars Foundation for its Motiv8 to Activ8 initiative.

It will see the foundation deliver sports sessions for young women from black and minority ethnic communities, helping them gain greater understanding of the importance of physical activity.

Silsden-based group Many Hands is getting £8,724 for its project, Hands Together. It will use the funding to deliver sessions on IT, sewing and crafts. This aims to equip people with new skills, while developing confidence and reducing isolation.

Many Hands spokesman Kath Cole said: “We’ve been going for just over a year and this is a real boost. It means we can extend our reach in the community by buying much-needed equipment and providing subsidised tuition to people who otherwise wouldn’t be able to be included in these workshops.”

Oxenhope Youth Club is benefitting to the tune of £7,217. The club will spend some of this on buying indoor and outdoor equipment, and will put the bulk of it towards taking members on a residential trip.

Club treasurer Jackie Ellis said: “This is extremely valuable funding and we’re very grateful to receive it. It will make a big difference.”

Finally, Keighley-based Small World Cultural Arts Collective has been awarded £4,260. It will spend the grant on equipment to support creative activities for young people, enabling them to increase their self-esteem while re-engaging with learning.